Technology & innovation

In Southern Russia, digital signal processing revolution is afoot

22 Dec '11
Oleg Kouzbit, Online News Managing Editor

Young Russian scientist Yevgeny Semenishchev is leading a research team at South-Russian State University of Economics and Service in an effort to develop ground-breaking methods of processing regular and multidimensional digital signals. Still at a lab level, the innovation has already received international recognition and may have wide applications ranging from control systems and biometrics to computer vision and economic forecasting.

The new technique is coming as a solution to an entrenched problem of excessive random noise with a priori unknown statistics and a barely discernible useful component—a plague of all current signal analysis methods used in automation and control systems.

The lack of ample a priori data on a signal and especially its useful component typically renders conventional approaches inoperative, encumbering a researcher’s work. Mr. Semenishchev and his university team are putting together a special software package for computer-aided signal processing that the developers say unravels the noise problem and enables continuous—and completely unmanned—signal forecasting.

The project concept has reportedly been rigorously scrutinized by the international not-for-profit Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE or I triple E). With IEEE approval Mr. Semenishchev is now listed as a speaker and presenter for the First International Conference on Emerging Signal Processing Applications (ESPA) to be held in Las Vegas on January 12-14, 2012 for practical engineers from all over the world.

The innovators

The prime mover in the project, Yevgeny Semenishchev, PhD, is an innovator from Shakhty, a small town in the Rostov region, and a professor at the radio electronic systems chair of South-Russian State University of Economics and Service (YuRGUES).

The main research vehicle and the sole investor in the project at this stage, the university has since 1969 been training skilled executive personnel for light industry, the service sector and, more recently, hi-tech SMEs. It is now one of Russia’s National Research Universities singled out over the past two years from among academia to have a broad mandate for scientific activity and R&D-focused entrepreneurship.

One of the largest educational and research establishments in Russia’s South, YuRGUES incorporates nine technology and economics departments with five branches across the area, as well as a research institute, college, lyceum, and a school of physics and mathematics.

Trend forecasters, a projected 20% of sales

With a reported five patents already under its belt the project team is said to have shaken hands with the Rostov branch of the Russian Academy of Agricultural Sciences on joint digital processing of economic data and trend forecasting.

The Academy may thus become the team’s first customer and will provide a platform to probe into one of the most immediate applications for Mr. Semenishchev’s innovation. The players hope economic data forecasters will account for about 20% of prospective software package sales.

The new system will also provide a useful tool for sociologists pinpointing trends, the developers say.

Signal automation, mine accident prediction and then some

A broader market includes developers of automation and control systems enabling automatic readjustment and alignment of ageing- and ambient-sensitive pickups. Two-dimensional signal automation systems also need innovative signal processing to trim down noise when handling data received from digital cameras’ photosensitive matrices and computer vision complexes.

In information-measuring systems and computer engineering, the new Shakhty technique is expected to increase accuracy and moderate noise in analog-to-digital conversion.

The method applies to modern antenna systems, long-range detection or explorations of atmo-, hydro- and lithospheres. Biometric systems that collect and process data to pick out an object’s biomechanical parameters are yet another application.

In a region like Rostov with its explosion-risky coal mining Mr. Semenishchev’s invention is likely to enhance prediction of methane outbursts that yearly claim lives. At nuclear power sites and in nearby localities, the new software package may be used to detect anomalous ionizing radiation.
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